Jack Adam

Dear Mom,

It’s me, your 42-and-a-half-year-old adult son, Herbert A. Reynolds. Well, it’s been about a week since I finally got a job and moved into my own place. I got your housewarming gift in the mail today — tuna noodle casserole, extra moist, with a hint of Tupperware flavor. Just how I always liked it. I figured you’d want to hear how things have been since I left home. I’ve enclosed some excerpts from my personal diary.




Moving day today! This morning I packed up all my stuff to bring to the new apartment. Well, almost all of it — my backpack could only fit 12 books of my 16-volume L. Ron Hubbard Complete Biographical Encyclopedia. Currently writing my mom a note to mail the others as soon as possible, even though I already have volumes 13 through 16 memorized (those ones are the classics!).

I’ve gotta go — the moving company truck is here. Well, by “moving company” I mean my friend Timmy from down the block. And by “truck” I mean Timmy from down the block’s stepdad’s motor scooter. In any case, my cats and I are all packed up and ready to move into our new place.


Today I got all settled into my new apartment. It’s very nice, but it doesn’t have a magic sink where the dishes wash themselves like the one I used to have at home. And my old house key doesn’t work on my apartment door…? Am I supposed to get a different key just because I live in a different building? Seems a little inefficient. Anyway, I’m getting pretty good at hoisting myself through the first-floor window. Well, I should probably be going to bed — tomorrow is my first day of work.


I just finished my first day of work as a “Quantitative Investment Analyst” for something called a “Goldman Sach.” Note to self: look up “quantitative investment” in dictionary. What even is that? I don’t know. What I do know is that lying on your resume is as easy as it is fun.


Today my buddies at work told me that Goldman will have me working “80 hours” in no time. I explained to them that 80 hours sounds like a lot when you lump it all together like that, but it’s actually less than seven hours of work per month. Today, for example, I sorted rubber bands by width from 7:44 a.m. until 8:44 a.m. — that’s one hour down, 79 to go — and it’s only January!

I’m learning the ropes at work from my new boss, Mr. Dudley. I’m supposed to buy something called “stocks and bonds.” I don’t know what a stocks or a bonds is, but buying them seems a little like buying cat food and more from Crazy Al’s Cat Food And More. The only difference is that here at Goldman Sach, it’s much less stressful because “stocks and bonds” are just make-believe, like KinzCash.


Today I had my first “performance review” at work. I was planning to perform a self-choreographed interpretive dance about my favorite scenes from “Star Trek,” but before I could even start the music, Mr. Dudley started going on and on about something called a “stock portfolio.” He told me that Goldman had “never seen an investor with such low yield in a bull market” and that they would have to “liquefy my portfolio if dividends didn’t start trending up.” I’m no expert on stock market jargon, but it sounds like I’m doing extremely well.


Bad news: the casserole my mom sent me ran out today. I’ll have to ask her to mail me another one — I don’t have any food in the apartment besides Tic Tacs and Fancy Feast. Sometimes I wish they just had one big store where you could buy lots of different types of food and bring them home. A “super food grocery,” they might call it. A “big market.” No, a “super big food market.” Oh well. I guess I can go to Applebee’s and get a dozen well-done burgers to go.


First full week of adult life is in the books. I logged three and a half hours at Goldman Sach this week (which puts me on pace for 182!), but Mr. Dudley still seemed pretty upset with my performance. The good news is that I got my paycheck today! Everyone else’s check was white, but mine was pink and said “severance pay package.” It’s all very exciting, and $200 is more than enough to pay back Applebee’s for those burgers I took.

Speaking of food, I got that casserole in the mail today. I should probably write a letter to my mom and thank her.

Caleb Cohen caleb.cohen@yale.edu